I would like to begin with a personal recollection. On 16 May 1940, two days after the capitulation of the Dutch Army, I
set foot on British soil as a penniless refugee. Six weeks later I got ajob as an official of the Netherlands Government Information Service. On the initiative of the Minister of Justice, Professor Gerbrandy, who had been active in the field ofbroadcasting in pre-war Holland and who was well aware of the importance of the BBC and of broadcasting in general, the Netherlands government had decided to start, if possible, a broadcasting service of its own, Radio Oranje - Radio Orange. The BBC, keen to preserve the monopoly of its European Service, had declined this idea but its objections were put aside by the Ministry of Information. Radio Orange started with a staff of two and I was one of them. Now Gerbrandy's idea had been opposed by some members of the Dutch cabinet and by no one more strenuously than the Prime Minister, de Geer, and it was at his insistence that the cabinet had decided that Radio Orange would only be allowed to broadcast texts that had been approved by four ministers, including de Geer.